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Cheers to Pluto! Beer Unveiling and Astronomy on Tap Flagstaff

February 16, 2023 @ 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM MST

The 4th Annual I Heart Pluto Festival kicks off at Mother Road Brewing Company, a local Flagstaff favorite! Mother Road will unveil its limited-edition beer, brewed exclusively for this year’s festival! Stick around for an Astronomy on Tap presentation and learn about Clyde Tombaugh’s handmade telescope, a precious historical artifact that will soon be on display in Lowell Observatory’s Rotunda Museum.

In 1928, Clyde Tombaugh completed construction of his third telescope, a 9-inch reflector. He built this Frankenstein of telescopes from an array of materials from the family farm. The mounting includes parts from a cream separator, automobile axle, and farm equipment fly wheel, and the tube is made of material used in grain augers. Tombaugh also built a storm cellar that provided the still air necessary to test the quality of the instrument’s optics. The telescope is an important piece of astronomy history because it was drawings Tombaugh made with this instrument that led to him being hired at Lowell Observatory, where he would go in to discover Pluto.


Alden Tombaugh, retired banker and son of Clyde Tombaugh

Kevin Schindler, Lowell Observatory Historian & Public Information Office



February 16, 2023
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM MST
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Lowell Observatory
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Mother Road Brewing Co.
7 S Mikes Pike St.
Flagstaff, AZ 86001 United States
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(928) 774-9139
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